Drama to business with spring play: How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying


Milagro Nolasco Argueta , Staff Writer

Chantilly drama is performing the musical “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” this week, with the final performances tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m. in the auditorium.

This musical takes place in a 1960s office building, and follows J. Pierrepont Finch, a window washer who climbs up the business ladder by following the strategies in the book “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying”.

“‘How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying’ is a very unique musical in that it’s set in this sort of semi reality,” senior Michael Rosegrant, who plays Finch’s rival Bud Frump, said. “It’s 1960s business world at the same time, [and] because it’s a musical, there’s already an element of the fantastical, of something that isn’t quite normal, real-world.”

The play centers on a variety of topics ranging from serious aspects to comedy. Individuals involved in the play’s production hope to keep audiences on their toes.

“It’s a satirical look at getting ahead of business,” play director and drama teacher Andrew Shaw said. “It’s the idea of all these tricks you can use to basically trick people into giving you promotions and rise up through the ranks of business, and the main character does it in a week.”

Going from being a window washer to a top businessman is not at all easy, but for Finch, it seems like a breeze.

“I play Finch and he is very sly, yet charming,” senior Evan Belsky said. “He uses a book to rise through the world of business seamlessly.”

After Finch lands a job at the World Wide Wicket Company, he tries to reach the top of the company and comes face to face with the boss’ nephew, Frump.

“When thinking about my character, I have chosen to play him in a way that I think is a little different than some other actors have chosen to play Frump,” Rosegrant said. “I’ve gone and made him a contrast to the rest of the show’s speed, so while everyone in the universe of our musical operates at this quick business world pace, Frump is in his own bubble.”

Drama students and staff have been working around the clock to prepare for the play, which is Shaw’s first production since coming to Chantilly.

“Shaw has really embraced our department, [despite] coming in just halfway through the year and putting on his first mainstage show at Chantilly High School within months of starting,” Rosegrant said. “He has done an amazing job of creating a show and working with us in a way that makes us all feel comfortable and happy.”

Tickets for the musical are $12 and can be purchased at the box office or on the Chantilly drama website.